Case #311 – November, 2011
A 55-year-old homebound Type II diabetic, originally from Haiti, was hospitalized for severe abdominal pain and hematemesis. Blood specimens were collected and sent to Hematology for routine work-up. Digital images were captured on a Wright-stained thin smear from a blood specimen collected at 2:25AM. The images (Figure A–C) were sent via email to the DPDx Team for diagnostic assistance. Measurements were not included in the email. What is your diagnosis? Based on what criteria?
This was a case of Bancroft’s filariasis caused by Wuchereria bancrofti. Diagnostic criteria included:
- sheathed microfilariae with an unstained sheath.
- microfilariae with a relatively short head space and an anucleate tail.
- nocturnal periodicity.
- history of residence in known area endemic for W. bancrofti.
More on: Lympthatic Filariasis
This case and images were kindly provided by the Wyckoff Heights Medical Center, Brooklyn, New York.
Images presented in the DPDx case studies are from specimens submitted for diagnosis or archiving. On rare occasions, clinical histories given may be partly fictitious.
DPDx is an educational resource designed for health professionals and laboratory scientists. For an overview including prevention, control, and treatment visit www.cdc.gov/parasites/.